Ragged Rose’s Guide to Velvet
Ragged Rose’s Guide to Velvet, tells you how velvet is constructed and offers some handy home methods to help you look after your velvet items.
How velvet is made:
The term ‘velvet’ refers to the weave and not the fabric itself.
- Velvet is woven on a specialist loom, creating a dense fabric pile which gives the velvet fabric its distinctive look and feel.
- It is woven as a double cloth. It is made by weaving two sets of warp threads simultaneously. (Warp is the lengthwise thread on the loom, weft is across the loom).
- They are then cut into two pieces along the warp.
- These two separate pieces are then rolled out separately. This is called pile cloth.
- The ends of the thread in this pile cloth are sticking up and sheared off. This forms a soft, tactile pile, so the velvet’s colour changes when it is brushed in different directions.
- Initially, velvet was made from silk which was why only Royalty and the very wealthy aristocracy could afford it. But now, it is produced from a range of different fibres ranging from the man made polyester cheaper end of the market, through to viscose, cotton and finally silk at the very premium luxury end.
- Ragged Rose velvet fabrics are created with 100% cotton and are pre washed before being made into products.
- The look, colour and texture of velvet will change depending on the direction the fabric is brushed, lighting and the wear.
How to look after Velvet:
Folding velvet will often lead to creasing and marks, which can be removed. Prolonged use without regular care will continue to crush the velvet and may damage the pile or mute the natural sheen.
A gentle vacuum, or brush lightly with a damp cloth, once a week should reverse any wear and maintain the textured pile of the fabric.
Steaming the fabric will also remove creases. There’s a number of ways you can do this:
- Turn the item inside out, point nozzle of steamer at the creases.
- You can also hang it in a steam-filled bathroom to remove creases.
- Boil water and put the product over the steam. Try to avoid getting it wet.
TIP: If you need to fold velvet, use tissue paper between the folds.
If you get small stains on velvet, gently remove the stains with a damp cloth. Wet the cloth in warm water and very carefully, gently rub the stain.. Don’t rub the cloth too hard as it may damage the cloth. Then dab the fabric until it is dry. Repeat the process until the stain is removed.
If you get large stains on velvet, it is better to get it dry cleaned.
- Put the item inside out.
- Use delicate, non-biological liquid detergent
- Gently squeeze out some of the excess water. Don’t wring it. Hang out or dry flat if possible to drip dry. Don’t use pegs, it will ruin the pile.
Don’t iron velvet as you can crush the pile. Use a pin board if available. Or gently steam.